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Laboratory Virologist


About World Health Organization

In February 1949, when the first session of the WHO Regional Committee for the Eastern Mediterranean was held in Cairo, the world was still recovering from the wounds inflicted on it by the Second World War. The historic first session reflected then the vision and determination of eleven countries with similar values, heritage and aspirations to work together in a unique partnership, and start building a better world for future generations.
The exceptional spirit of partnership and collaboration that has governed the relationship between WHO and its Member States in the Eastern Mediterranean Region over the years, resulted in landmark achievements bringing health and hope to all corners of the region.

Let us acknowledge our achievements, so that we may build on the success to meet the challenges of a new world ahead

Job Summary

Emerging and re-emerging epidemic diseases pose an ongoing threat to global health security, and the list of infectious hazards is growing. The Infectious Hazard Management department of WHO provides technical support to countries to prevent and control epidemics. Strengthening laboratory services are among the supports being provided by WHO.
In Afghanistan, Central Public Health Laboratory is National reference lab for testing and verifying the majority of these pathogens. Besides provision of the support to Public Health and surveillance, CPHL also provides diagnostic services to the individual clients referred by the hospitals. Patients are being referred for microbiological, pathological and other tests in a huge number on daily basis.
CPHL serves as testing lab for all samples collected by National Disease Surveillance and Response System including CCHF samples and functions as National Influenza Center (NIC) for Influenza surveillance.
NIC has to perform laboratory diagnosis on all specimens by real time RT-PCR, perform virus isolation, identify isolates and send them to WHO Collaborating Centre (CC) in timely manner in order to study further and to include them in the global Influenza vaccine component. NIC should be on high alert and performing throughout the year to isolate and identify or diagnose any un typable Flu viruses or any emerging, novel Influenza viruses in real time. As a part of the GISRS Laboratory Network NIC should be able to fulfil all conditions of the GISRS and PIP Program. This requires highly efficient laboratory and the work force. To ensure a well-functioning CPHL and NIC HR capacity of the current staff needs to be built.
WHO will second a senior national virologist to CPHL to provide on the job training to the existing staff. The incumbent will be focused on the influenza, supporting NIC, but will also support other areas under IHM. The incumbent will be reporting to Director CPHL and IHM Manager at WHO Country office.

Job Details

Date Posted: 30 Oct 2018 Reference: WHO-2018-10-37
Closing Date: 13 Nov 2018 Work Type: Full Time
Number of Vacancies: 1 Gender: Any
Functional Area: Health/Medical Open Ended: NO
Nationality: Afghan Salary Range: 1500 to 1500 USD
Contract Type: Contractor Years of Experience: 3 Year(s)
Contract Duration: 1 Year(s) & 0 Month(s) Extension Possibility: Yes
Probation Period: 3 Months

Duties and Responsibilities

Under direct guidance of CPHL director, and in close communication with IHM team at WHO, the incumbent will undertake the following duties:
• Assist CPHL/NIC in developing procedures and protocols for testing high threat pathogens including Influenza, CCHF, Dengue, etc.
• Build the capacities of the existing staff of CPHL/NIC on PCR and culture methods
• Develop effective system for the reporting of the results to the stakeholders
• Ensure that FluNet, EMFLU and other relevant online databases are being updated timely and consistently
• Strengthen networking with Regional References Laboratories and explore if they can be used for surveillance purposes
• Provide timely/regular feedback on received samples from field
• Lead analyses of annual and multi-year lab data and ensure publish the findings in peer reviewed journals
• Ensures all reagents and supplies are available in sufficient amount when needed and provide timely request based on consumption
• Conduct physical inventory on quarterly basis and submit the report along with request to WHO and relevant MOPH departments
• Ensure that virus isolates and or positive influenza samples are being shared with WHO CC on timely and consistent bases

Travels to Provinces

Require Travels to Provinces


Willingness to work long hours and weekends, especially during important activities such conferences/meetings, outbreaks, and other essential events.


1. Afghan National
2. Master Degree in microbiology/virology from a recognized university
3. Minimum 3 years of working in virology lab
4. Experience in international agencies is an asset
5. Excellent writing and speaking of English language

 Screening of the candidates;
 Long List - The candidates shall be longlisted base on the minimum qualifications and relevant experience to the Vacancy Notice (VN).
 Short List - Further shortlist shall be done base on years of relevant experience, higher education and required skills.
 Assessment method:
 WHO may conduct written/presentation and interview or combination of the mentioned mediums to select the most qualified candidate.
 WHO is an equal opportunity employer and qualified women are particularly encouraged to apply and equally qualified female candidate will be given preference.

Note: Type of contract is APW (Agreement for performance of work) based in Central Public Health Laboratory.

Job Location

Afghanistan - Kabul
AF AF 12


Bachelors Degree, Health/Medical

Submission Guideline

Interested applicants (Afghan National) meeting the above qualifications are requested to submit their applications quoting this Vacancy Announcement Number (WHOAFG-2018-10-37) along with their curriculum vitae, copy of National ID (Tazkira) to below mentioned email:

Applications received after the closing date will not be considered. ONLY CANDIDATES UNDER SERIOUS CONSIDERATION WILL BE CONTACTED FOR INTERVIEW AND TEST.

WHO is a smoke free environment.

Submission Email

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